The seasonally adjusted value of exported goods decreased 6.0 percent in the March 2012 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. Falls in the value of exported dairy products, crude oil, and fruit led the decrease.
“Export values have come off their historic highs and have trended down in the December 2011 and March 2012 quarters,” industry and labour statistics manager Neil Kelly said. “This follows increases since the September 2009 quarter.”
Values of imported goods have been steadily increasing since the recent low in the September 2009 quarter, but remain below their overall peak in the September 2008 quarter.
The seasonally adjusted value of imported goods increased 3.0 percent in the March 2012 quarter. This was led by intermediate goods, primarily due to crude oil, which is at its highest quarterly value and quantity.
The seasonally adjusted trade balance for the March 2012 quarter was a deficit of $787 million, equivalent to 6.9 percent of exports. This follows three consecutive quarterly trade surpluses.
For the March 2012 month, export values decreased $400 million (8.7 percent) compared with March 2011, while imports increased $48 million (1.2 percent). The trade balance for the March 2012 month was a surplus of $134 million (3.2 percent of exports). This compares with an average surplus of 7.8 percent of exports over the previous five March months.
Overseas Merchandise Trade: March 2012